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  • Politics
    Reuters Videos

    Biden says the economic 'climb is steep'

    “Today there is more evidence our economy is moving in the right direction. But it’s clear we have a long way to go."U.S. President Joe Biden on Friday addressed a disappointing jobs report, coming at the end of a pandemic-spurred slump in the economy.American employers - likely restrained by shortages of workers and raw materials - added just 266,000 new jobs in April, according to the report which surprised economists who expected nearly a million new jobs.But Biden on Friday pointed to the dismal numbers as proof that his pandemic relief measures are needed to bring the economy back from the abyss."Today's report just underscores in my view how vital the actions we're taking are… Our efforts are starting to work. But the climb is steep and we still have a long way to go... The American Rescue Plan is just that - a rescue plan. It’s to get us back to where we were. But that’s not nearly enough. We have to Build Back Better. That’s why we need the American Jobs Plan I’ve proposed.”Tied to the Jobs Plan is an infrastructure plan - where trillions more government dollars would be spent.Republicans object to the high price tag of Biden’s initiatives.Critics have said generous unemployment benefits within Biden’s American Rescue Plan are a disincentive for people to return to work.Florida Senator Marco Rubio on Friday Tweeted: "I told you weeks ago that in #Florida I hear from #smallbusinesses every day that they can't hire people because the government is having them not go back to work.”YELLEN: "In fact what you see is the exact opposite."The White House refuted this notion.Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, Friday, highlighted that parents whose children have different return-to-school schedules, or those with health concerns, may be hesitant to re-enter the work force."It's clear that there are people who are not ready and able to go back into the labor force… I don’t think the addition to unemployment compensation is really the factor that is making a difference.”Jared Bernstein, a member of the president's Council of Economic Advisers, told Reuters that - April notwithstanding - the American Rescue Plan had helped generate an average of more than half a million jobs per month over the last three months.

  • Business
    Reuters Videos

    S&P, Dow rise to record highs

    Investors took bad news as good news, powering the Dow and S&P 500 to record highs Friday despite a report showing an unexpectedly sharp slowdown in jobs growth. That dour data eased Wall Street’s concerns over rising inflation and potentially higher interest rates, fueling rate-sensitive mega-cap growth stocks. Ladenburg Thalmann Asset Management CEO Phil Blancato: “When you look at today's market action, it’s somewhat surprising that we didn't get a wide- based sell-off based on that real miss on the jobs market. However, let's not forget there are trillions of dollars on the sideline waiting for an opportunity to invest. And I think some of that made it into the market. Remember, bond yields cooled, which is fuel for the equity market so it’s a pendulum there.”The Dow and S&P ended roughly seven-tenth percent higher. The Nasdaq rose 0.9%. For the week, the Dow and S&P gained ground but the Nasdaq declined one-and-a-half percent. Roku shares rocketed 12% higher. Strong growth in advertising and content distribution helped push the streaming device maker’s revenue far beyond analysts’ estimates.A slew of analysts raised their price target on Expedia on hopes the online travel company would continue to benefit from the recovery in the travel industry. Shares jumped 5%.

  • Entertainment
    Reuters Videos

    Week ahead: Disney results, inflation in focus

    It's the ultimate re-opening play: quarterly results from entertainment conglomerate Walt Disney top the Reuters Business Calendar for the week of May 10th.#1It's likely to be all "zip-a-dee-doo-dah, zip-a-dee-ay" at the Walt Disney company when quarterly numbers come out on Thursday.Most of their major theme parks around the world are reopened, albeit with limited capacity in the U.S. due to social distancing guidelines...and movie theaters in major cities like Los Angeles and New York are back as well...with limited seating for the time being.Analysts are expecting revenues to come in at 15.8 billion dollars and earnings to come in at 28 cents a share.The big thing to listen out for are the subscriber numbers for Disney+, which is riding high on the success of "The Falcon and the Winter Soldier" and "WandaVision."Last time we heard from Disney it had reached 94.9 million subscribers - and that was before Netflix revealed its disappointing subscriber numbers.#2Airbnb keeps the reopening theme going on Thursday....The home-sharing site releases its quarterly numbers...Giving investors a clue on how many people are now willing to leave their own home to stay at someone else's.Revenues are expected to come in at 711 million dollars.Companies like Disney and Airbnb, which are set to benefit from the economic reopening, are on Wall Street's watch list.Nick Colas of Data Trek Research."We think that part of the rotation is the next move in the market. It may not reflect in terms of S&P levels because tech is such an overweight in S&P 500, but we do think those groups will begin to work again as we get more manifestations of the reopening and get to see that earnings leverage really kick in in the back half of the year."#3Inflation or no inflation? That's the big question on Wall Street's mind.Investors will start to get answers on Wednesday with the latest Consumer Price Index. Economists polled by Reuters expect to see core prices, which excludes volatile food and energy components, show a year-over-year rise of 2.3 percent for April.Producer Prices follow on Thursday. Manufacturers have already been complaining that prices for everything from lumber to labor has been going up.And there's one more piece of data to look out for. On Friday, retail sales numbers for April are expected to show consumers kept on shopping.#4Ahead of that, it's the art of money...digital money.Sotheby's will allow buyers to use bitcoin or ethereum to bid and pay for Banksy's "Love is in the air", which goes on the auction block Wednesday.It's expected to fetch the equivalent of between 3 million and 5 million dollars. Buyers will have to pay cold-hard-cash for everything else with the hammer going down on art auctions throughout the week at both Sotheby's and Christie's.#5Rather bet real money on the next possible red-hot IPO?Website builder and hosting company Squarespace starts trading Wednesday at the New York Stock Exchange.Ticker symbol: SQSP.Squarespace was last valued at 10 billion dollars during a private funding round.